So this race we decided to have more organized and faster driver change stops. I made up a list of tasks for each person. Each person on the team had a list of things to do including the driver and next driver. It worked pretty well. Most of out pit stops got much faster.
At every stop we loosened the alternator mounting bolt, pulled it as tight as we could and re-tightened the bolt. It worked almost all day. When my time to drive came up we pulled off another successful pit stop. I went out there and the car was soo much better than on Saturday. After several laps I saw the battery light blink on and off a few times, then a few turns later it came on and stayed on. Since we were having trouble with the alternator belt I knew we must have broken the belt. I did two more laps and the light stayed on so I came in and they replaced the belt. I had bought a new belt that morning during Dennis’ drive. I had a feeling we’d need it. I went back out and finished the day and for the first time I got to take the checkered flag and do the parade lap, waving to all the corner workers.
During my drive I had a good battle with Thomas the Tank Engine. Thomas is a 3rd generation VW Jetta. I don’t want to say that he was blocking, but I had caught up with him and was clearly faster especially in the corners. He refused to let me by using the whole track from the apex to the runout but a bit slower than I wanted to go, then he relied on his power advantage to hold me off on the straights. After quite some time of trying I had a chance with no other faster or slower traffic complicating things so I kept on his bumper hard through turns 3, 4, 5, and 6. In 6 he went in too hard and nearly lost it and scrubbed off some speed recovering. That gave me a just enough advantage to keep next to him on the inside going into the long flat out section of turns 7 and 8. In 8 I did not lift and he did so I pulled ahead and consolidated my pass in 9 by putting two slower cars between us. He made a hard charge to get back by trying to outbrake me going into 14 and 15 before the front straight. But I wasn’t going to let him in. I closed that door and used the awesome advantage of limited slip to get on the throttle way before he could and just launched out of turn 15. He was able to pull up behind me by the end of the front straight but I only lifted a bit then got on the throttle and prayed my way through turn 1 at about 85. He braked and lost lots of time. After that he just got smaller and smaller in my rear view.
Later I had a fun battle with a yellow E30 bimmer that said “Kiss my farming ass” on the back. I passed him by getting in line with faster cars when he got stuck behind a slower car. I put some distance between us. But 2-3 laps before the checkered flag he caught up. I imagine he was frustrated because he had a slight power advantage but I was able to launch out of the corners faster. After a lap or two he got a good run on me and I let him pass. Not that I could have prevented it without crashing. I kept behind him to the end of the race. He’d pull away on the long straights but I’d make up most of it in turns 3-6.
I got to take the checkered flag for my first time ever. The the parade lap waving to all the corner workers. It was glorious. We finished in 49th overall and 20th in B class. Our fastest time was a 2:24.144. Almost certainly that was in Tedd’s Sunday stint.